In Quebec, there are different laws to protect seniors. Know your rights by reading the following article.
The law to fight against mistreatment of seniors and all other adults in vulnerable situations
According to the Government of Quebec : “Mistreatment is a single or repeated act, or lack of appropriate action, occurring within any relationship where there is an expectation of trust, which causes harm or distress to an older adult, whether the person deliberately wants to cause harm or not.”
Abuse can take different forms as indicated by the INSPQ , namely violence and neglect. Abuse can be physical, sexual, psychological, material or financial. It can also be organizational, manifested by age discrimination (ageism) or violation of rights.
This type of violence is defined by acts of violence which psychologically affect the victims. Acts of violence can be done in very concrete ways, for example, when people are insulted and humiliated. Finally, it is when a person harms an elder in their dignity or in their self-esteem.
Financial exploitation consists of actions (linked to the economy) done without a person's consent in order to take money (or their possessions). For example, fraud or pressure to change a will.
The most common acts are rape and sexual harassment. In sexual violence, we can include "unacceptable" gestures.
Physical abuse is understood to mean all physical abuse of seniors. It is the use of physical pain.
According to the Government of Quebec , this law provides for six measures to combat mistreatment, namely:
- Mandatory adoption of an anti-maltreatment policy
- Expansion of the local service quality and complaints commissioner’s role
- Possibility of lifting confidentiality or professional secrecy when there is a significant risk of death or serious injury, protection against reprisals and immunity from prosecution
- Regulation of the use of cameras or other monitoring mechanisms
- Implementation of a Québec-wide framework agreement and collaborative intervention processes to combat maltreatment of seniors
- Obligation to report certain cases of maltreatment
The Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms, section 48.
Article 48 of the Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms specifies this: “ Every aged person and every handicapped person has a right to protection against any form of exploitation.Such a person also has a right to the protection and security that must be provided to him by his family or the persons acting in their stead.”
That said, here are some examples of exploitation :
Get money from someone using force or threats
You are prevented from receiving appropriate medical services
We force you to sign checks
Isolate the senior by preventing him from receiving visitors
The law on the protection of the rights of senior tenants
Since 2016, new provisions have governed the conditions under which a landlord can evict a senior tenant. In fact, the landlord can no longer oust it to subdivide a dwelling, enlarge it substantially or change its allocation, or to take it back to find accommodation or to house one of its eligible relatives, only if:
The eldest is 70 and over;
Elder has lived in the accommodation for 10 years
His income is equal to or less than the maximum income allowing him to be eligible for low-rent housing.
About the residential lease, see the blog article Everything about retirement homes' leases. You will get all the details on the different conditions of the lease.
The Civil Code of Quebec
The Civil Code deals with several points on the rights of the elderly, inheritance, property and civil liability. In particular, article 15 on incapacity and article 10 on the integrity of the person.
The protection mandate and general power of attorney
In order to respect the wishes of the senior, it is possible to fulfill a protection mandate beforehand to protect oneself in the event of a loss of autonomy. This notarized document will make it possible to establish the methods for managing his assets and the decisions for his person in a context where she would become totally unfit. For more information, see the blog article Mandate for protection and general power of attorney written by social worker Julie Mailhot, who specializes in assessing incapacity.
Do you think you are a victim of exploitation, or do you know someone who could be a victim?
- Contact the Human Rights and Youth Rights Commission . This organization ensures that the protections guaranteed by the Quebec Charter of Human Rights and Freedoms are respected. Commission services are free.
- Call the Elder Mistreatment Helpline . It offers services to different clienteles and is specifically intended for seniors who experience abuse, their loved ones, as well as any other person (population, workers and professionals) who is concerned about a situation in which an older person seems suffer abuse.
- For a complaint about the quality of services in public establishments, you can contact the Commissioner for Complaints and Quality of Services.
When visiting seniors' residences, make sure you have the following information before signing a lease:
- if it is a residence for autonomous or semi-autonomous people;
- the list of services offered and their costs;
- residence regulations;
- the accident reporting procedure for the residence;
- a copy of the residence staff code of ethics, as well as the activities and leisure calendar;
- a copy of the menu of meals offered or, at least, the possibility of consulting it.
In addition, here is a list of 10 essential questions to ask.
Need help finding a senior home that meets your needs?
We are here ! Call us at 1-844-918-1020 or fill out an accommodation request.